Envy is a Negative Emotion That Creates Unhappiness

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According to Barry Schwartz, a professor at the University of California (Berkeley), and author of the book The Paradox of Choice social comparison often creates envy and envy quickly makes people miserable.

Human beings have a character flaw that is hardwired into us thanks to evolution. They tend to look at others and compare others to themselves. If the other person has a bigger house, nicer car, more money, etc. this creates envy. Envy is a negative emotion that causes a sensation known as unhappiness.

Since comparing ourselves to others is a hardwired, human character flaw, the key then is to shift your comparison from those who have more to to those who are less fortunate. This eliminates the negative emotion of envy and produces the positive emotion of gratitude.

Gratitude creates positive feelings about our lives and is the gateway to a positive mental outlook.

So, the next time you find yourself staring at a huge home or expensive car, instead turn away and replace your visual with a home smaller than yours or a jalopy of a car. You’ll notice almost immediately the feeling of gratitude, which will replace any feeling of envy.